I just started working in a very busy school among many Taiwanese women. We all share the same prep space and to say it’s crowded would be an understatement.
I have been in these situations before, back home not here, and I always though it was basic human nature to be relatively considerate when working in a confined space.
That’s just not the way the Chinese operate, so I would like some feedback here regarding their behaviour: eg; they are LOUD!!!
Sure, I’ve been here in Taiwan, and Asia for that matter, for 4 years and have come to expect loud talkers and behavior we westerners view as rude. But why is it that, even if two Taiwanese are within inches of each other, they have raise their voices so they can be heard 30 meters away? And there’s no consideration for anybody who happens to be near them, busily trying to prepare a lesson plan(s). To me it just doesn’t make sense.
For example, if I was to engage another western person in my office, and proceeded to speak to him in the same way Taiwanese speak to each other, I’m sure they would all look at us as if we were insane. But yet, they do it as a rule and not an exception. Then I am viewed as a prick if I ask them to lower their voices so I can concentrate (even though I would never do that).
Also, they let the kids into the teacher prep area which I view as a BIG no-no. Kids have no social awareness whatsoever. There’s this one fat kid whose the son of another teacher and he walks in all the time, talking to his mother at the top of his lungs for at least 10 minutes before he goes away. She, in turn, also talks back to him at 140 db. And no one says a thing about it.
I would like to understand their cultural interplay much more so I could at least have some undserstanding as to why they lack basic professional courtesy in a busy office.